Buses Versus Boring Tunnels

Thunderfoot is a youtuber who mocks and criticizes many things. Sometimes he is right like criticizing Indiegogo ripoffs which promote dangerous air pumped mini-scuba tanks. He can also be right when he aggregates criticism of three UFO videos made public by the Pentagon. However, there are other times he gets it very wrong with his arguments against SpaceX and Boring Company.

Here we will go over his Boring Company critique. He makes the argument that moving 1200 people an hour could be done cheaper with buses instead of in Tesla EVs going through tunnels. Yes, I can ride a bus and it is cheaper than car, but riding a bus is not the same as riding a car. There is the experience of riding in a luxury Tesla versus being loaded on a full or nearly full bus. It would not just be a regular bus. Thunderfoot wants you to get around the current Vegas convention center in a double articulated bendy bus.

The calculation of how many people per hour can be moved through the Boring System is also wrong. Thunderfoot claims loading or unloading 100 people at a time can be done in a minute. He claims loading four people into a car is one minute. The car has four doors. So one person can enter into each door. It takes 30 seconds to load a car with people waiting at a stop. 100 people would need to enter through at most four doors. It will take over 25 times longer for 100 people to enter the bus. It would also take time for the people to walk to their seats and get seated. It would take more time if they were carrying items and if there were many old people. It will take 10-20 minutes to fully load and unload the bus.

The current system is just the beginning. It will be extended to the entire Vegas Strip and out to the airport. Vegas also has other monorail transport systems between casinos. Vegas wants to move people as quickly as possible between locations (convention center, casino and airport). Also, it matters where things are placed. Having an underground station that goes into the heart of a casino or convention center is different then being left 300 feet away on the curb. Walking 300 feet through a casino or convention center can easily take ten minutes.

Buses would travel on the surface and there would be traffic. Vegas has heavy traffic at rush hour and on the strip. The strip is especially busy on the weekend. The Boring tunnel system will be extended to whole strip. I have driven between Vegas casinos with a rental car. I have ridden a bus from the Vegas airport to the Casinos. Traffic is frequently a problem.

The Boring Tunnel is going up against subway and light rail. The tunnel component is ten to one hundred times cheaper than other tunnels in the USA. Subways in the US like BART can cost up to $1 billion per mile but are typically $100 million per mile.

Warren Redlich makes several of these points about the obvious problems with Thunderfoots Boring Tunnel complaints.

The Onion did a bit on buses instead of high speed rail. High speed rail projects can be disastrous and massive waste. However, there is more to making an equivalent transportation substitution.

SOURCES – Warren Redlich, Thunderfoot, The Onion
Written By Brian Wang, Nextbigfuture.com